Content Analysis of Managing Cultural Diversity Syllabi for Determining the Relative Importance of Course Syllabi Elements
Globalization has made multiculturalism a fundamental reality of the modern organization’s external environment by impacting on their access to markets, resources, and people. Similarly, immigration and demographic trends have made cultural diversity, important to the internal dynamics of the modern workplace. Managing cultural diversity, in many cases, is not only an important public policy goal, but also of great value in creating a high quality work life and increasing productivity. The academic world has recognized the importance of managing cultural diversity by developing and offering courses in the area of managing cultural diversity. In order to improve the effectiveness of the existing courses, research has been conducted to develop methods to analyze the contents of the various syllabi. One of the key focus of this analyses is to establish the relative importance of the various process/content elements within the syllabus. There remains much scope to improve the existing research dealing with the determination of relative importance of the process/content elements of these syllabi. First, the nature of tools used to establish the relative importance of the set of defining elements of a syllabus in these studies can be improved by using quantative tools. Second, the basis for the number of syllabi collected and the methods employed for collection of syllabi are not well-justified. Finally, these studies are often restricted in their geographical scope. That is, the syllabi are collected only from schools within the country. Considering the global nature of today’s organizational environment, these studies can have limited effectiveness. We propose to conduct a systematic study of syllabi and arrive at the relative importance of the defining elements of syllabi in a rational manner and employ some of the tools that are used to determine the relative importance of entities in the area of multiattribute weight assessment, which deals with the development of methods for determining the relative ranks and importance for a set of related entities. A discussion of tools, including the tool “conjoint analysis” used in our research project, is presented under “Multiattribute weight assessment”. The deliverables from the project include 1) identification of defining elements (DEs) 2) rankings of DEs and 3) effective syllabus profiles 4) relative importance of the DEs. A validation exercise will be conducted in order to compare the rankings with the relative importance weights of the DEs determined from conjoint analysis.
Keywords: Cultural Diversity Syllabus, Multiattribute Weight Assessment, Conjoint Analysis, Content Analysis, Course Defining Elements
Dr. Milton Gittens
Associate Professor of Public Administration, Anisfield School of Business, Ramapo College of New Jersey
Dr. Srikrishna Govindaluri
Assistant Professor of Management, Anisfield School of Business, Ramapo College of New Jersey